Couple earns extra £3,200 a year thanks to ‘green’ solar panelled home

One couple is sharing how they are able to make an extra £3,200 a year thanks to their climate-friendly home.

John and Jacky Rodge from Pembrokeshire sell back excess electricity from solar panels which are attached to their house.

The pair spent £9,500 on panels for their five-bed home in 2012 and soon found themselves generating more energy than they used.

Over the past year, the Rodge family raked up an average of £270 a month by selling excess electricity to the grid.

However, the married couple still have to pay for power and a standing charge but their solar panels mean their annual energy bill only comes to around £609.

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In comparison, the average energy bill for a five-bedroom home in the UK comes to £2.956, according to British Gas.

Despite the initial installation cost being expensive, the Rodge clan have generated enough electricity in the last seven years to pay the bill off.

John explained: “I’d been interested in them for many years and been of the opinion that micro-generation is the way to go.

“When we looked at the figures that were available to us at the time, the array cost us about £9.5,000 to have it installed and the company that did the installation estimated that it’d be paying for itself in 10 years.

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“We’re 11 years in now and it had actually paid for itself within the first seven years. It’s been clear profit – the smallest cheque I’ve had is about £300 back from the grid – which comes in every few months, but it’s usually around a £1000.

“On an average day we’ll run a TV, an iMac, at least two guitar amplifiers, a dishwasher, a washing machine, an electric kettle and an espresso machine which is on for most of the day.”

According to the father-of-one, he would be paying 8- percent more for his energy bills without the solar panels.

Thanks to an app, John is able to track the output of the panels which he considers a long-term investment.

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He added: “You don’t install solar panels and expect to get massive savings immediately, you need to know what you’re getting long term. So if I last another 10 years I’ll take that.

“It’s a green no-brainer. The cutting of the feeding tariff was a disaster of mismanagement of epic proportions, on the part of a very very stupid government.

“But in terms of energy generation, the obvious solution would be to renationalise the national grid and bring power generation back into public ownership. The money coming in happened immediately.”

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